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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Pre-School continues to drive me to tears

This morning started out well, Charlotte picked out her new navy blue dress to wear to school today but then refused breakfast - that's always a sign of bad things to come.  We made a smoothie hoping she'd drink that on the way to school and thus get something in her tummy but she refused it in the car.  I tried everything to cajole her into drinking it to no avail.  Upon arriving to school I told her that I'd tell her teacher she didn't have breakfast and that she'd need to drink the smoothie.  She bawled.  She has this screeching cry that is impossible to talk over.  I tried to explain that she needed to have her breakfast in school since she didn't have it in the car or at home.  She reluctantly gets out of the car and follows me into the school, while I carry the offending drink.

We arrive to her class and as before she hangs out by the coat rack, just outside the classroom.  I drop off her lunch in the class come out and try to convince her to go in.  She refuses and suddenly exclaims that she doesn't want to go to school.

We struggle back and forth, I say go into your class, she says no. 

I'm done.  I simply can't take it anymore.  I grab her stuff and say fine let's go.  I don't even tell the teacher we are leaving.  Down the hallway we go, another teacher says "bye mom, have a nice day" to my grim face.  To the lady at the front desk I say, "I'm tired of fighting with her, she doesn't want to stay so we are going home".

I call her dad and say come get your daughter, she refuses to go to school.

In the car she wants to draw, she wants to talk, she wants a pen.  I snap at her to be quiet, I'm very angry and not going to talk to her until her dad arrives.  Then she cracks my anger wide open with a quiet statement "but I don't want to fight".

I'm upset because I put so much effort into getting her lunch ready, getting her ready for school, getting to work on time and all for nothing.  It's not a justifiable anger, she's obviously going through a social panic about school and I'm too absorbed in getting to work to help her through it.

I keep thinking the solution is to leave earlier so she doesn't have to walk into a classroom that is full and so I have time to spend with her in calming her anxiety but to do that I need my husbands support to wake up earlier and help us get out the door at 8am.  We talk and talk about how to make our mornings go smoother and more efficiently but until that day when change actually happens, I'm not sure how I can keep balancing work and pre-school. 


Katrina said...

I am planning to put Anika in preschool next month, but I am dreading similar situations. She is my strong willed one and the one who can make me so angry and drive me to tears. I can completely envision this. With that said, and being objective in this particular case (as much as I can be), I think you have to determine what your real "goal" is for her/ your family and make decisions toward that end. For example, Anika has a ROYAL fit every single week we go to church. She has to be pulled away from clinging to my leg EVERY week while screeching at the top of her lungs; however, I have decided that in this situation, I no longer have to goal for her to be happy and content. She is well loved and cared for despite her misery. If I take her into service, TWO goals aren't met. 1. She doesn't learn to be apart from me and socialize. 2. My entire worship experience is ruined. So for Charlotte, is your goal for her to be happy? Socialized? Learn routine? Give you and Dad a break? Some of those ends might be at cross purposes with one another and she is clearly able to manipulate that fact. (ie: Mom and Dad want me to be happy, so if I am sad and cross, we will do something else.) Is the solution to leave earlier OR to accept that she may be unhappy and cantankerous for a while--potentially a long while? If you can have a plan while your emotions are not on edge, then when she goes crazy (and you do), you can just forge on ahead according to plan. (HA! i know--easier said than done.)

Amy L. Sullivan said...

UGH! My second starts preschool next Monday. Ugh, Ugh.